Rating agencies speak on COVID-19
COVID-19 is having and will continue for an indefinite period to have a myriad of effects, many unprecedented, on the operations, revenues and debt service coverage of municipal market issuers and borrowers. Disclosures about these effects now appear in most official statements and in an increasing number of stickers and voluntary filings with EMMA. Not surprisingly, the rating agencies have a significant and growing interest in the subject, which can be expected to influence their rating and surveillance processes, ratings analyses, in some cases ratings themselves, and possibly result in some changes in rating criteria. Even though this is a rapidly evolving situation, the rating agencies already have some concerns and perceptions to convey, that may help issuers, bankers and advisors as they evaluate financing plans and develop strategies for how to manage the effects of COVID-19.To that end, Orrick, Herrington& Sutcliffe, LLP has assembled a panel of all four rating agencies for a special Orrick and Bond Buyer hosted webinar.